tv The Communicators CSPAN June 10, 2013 8:00am-8:31am EDT
violated a samsung patent, it could restrict iphone sales in the u.s. unless the president takes action. >> guest: well, i think the president will take action, because this cannot stand. but in my experience over 20 years representing silicon valley lawsuits and the competition that drives so much of what ends up in a courtroom not something that's new. but this is obviously going to have to be faced by the, handled by the administration, and then the facts have to come out as well. but block an iphone is something that's very big. this is one of the most popular products not only in the united states, but around the world as well. >> host: another issue is on patent controls. and president obama has ordered
regulators to root out patent trolls. are they a problem for your company? >> guest: they are. and increasingly so. this reminds me of an issue that i dealt with many, many years ago, and that is security litigation that i had introduced legislation on. and i would say that when i compare the two, security litigation and the lawsuits that surrounded all of that, i would put a multiplier on it compared to patent trolls. but this is costing companies a great deal, it interrupts innovation which is what, who and what we are. now, there's legislation that has been introduced. there's more than one bill in the congress. i think what we have to do is to take a very close look to see, you know, what is the best prescription for handling this.
and it's important to note that, you know, that all companies are not onboard relative to a given solution. but it is a problem. there are more and more that refer to it. it is taking a toll, and there's an old saying that my father used to use, it's a racket. so it is going to have to be addressed, because it is costly and not just in terms of dollars, but in terms of innovation as well. >> is there bipartisan support for patent troll legislation? >> guest: i think so. and the bills that i'm familiar with that have been introduced in the house are bipartisan bills. and that's the way it should be. >> host: also joining our conversation is brendan sasso, technology reporter for "the hill" newspaper. >> thanks, peter. i want to switch gears and ask you about tom wheeler. this is the president's nominee
to chair the federal communications commission. some people have expressed a little concern about his lobbying background. he was the head of the cable lobbying group and the cell phone lobbying group. i'm wonder what you think of the nomination and whether you think he'll be a fair chairman. >> guest: well, a, he's the president's choice. he's the nominee, and i believe that his nomination will not only be taken up, but i think that he will be confirmed. i don't think there are very many that would be free of the background that you just described unless we brought in a 22-year-old that simply has not had any time or experience here in washington. now, that's a commentary on our system, and it is a rub to many people. that's on one side. that's one book end. the other book end is -- and i
think that this is a very important one -- is experience. you want someone that is experienced with a deep and broad understanding of the industries and the issues that are attached to these industries. now, the chairman of the fcc is not there to favor a given industry, but to understand what those issues are. so tom wheeler has a great deal of important experience under his belt and a very powerful agency, the federal communications commission, where i'd like to see more competition where we deal with special access, where we deal with interoperability, where we make sure that the incentive, the voluntary auction where for the first time in the history of our country that there is this kind of undertaking, that he will shepherd, be able to shepherd
that through in a way that will bring about wonderful choices and competition for the consumers in our country. >> so you mentioned a few issues that you think are likely to come up before the fcc. i want to ask about net neutrality. verizon has sued to overturn the fcc's net neutrally rules. if the court sides with verizon and strikes down the rules in whole or in part, what do you think the next step would be? do you think that. >> guest: the next step will be that i will introduce legislation that will allow the fcc to keep the internet open, accessible and free. >> i wonder whether the republican, your republican colleagues in the house are going to agree with you on that issue though. i'm wondering, so if either how would get some sort of legislation or action passed or if that fails, whether you think tom wheeler should reclassify broadband in order to enact, reenact the net neutrality laws.
>> guest: well, that is one of the options. but to broaden this out beyond a subcommittee and a committee in congress which, of course, is important in what the composition is and who would do what, the american people are the ones that understand this. and just as i think you saw during the sopa debate that once it was out there what that bill was, there was a prairie fire in this country. p -- and so the internet is not something that the american people want to see carved up amongst large interests. that's not why the internet has been so successful. so i think what -- with the american people weighing in on this, they could teach congress a lesson or two. >> i'm wondering, this was news from a few weeks ago, but there was rumors that espn might strike a deal to subsidize a data for some people's, for cell phone plans so you could stream
an espn game on your phone, it wouldn't cost against your cap. i know some consumers might think that sounds great, i get to watch more sports, but it runs up into those net neutrality rules. would that sort of service be a good thing for consumers or -- >> guest: i don't think it is myself. i mean, i read the article, and i was taken aback by it. but really when you look at the broad landscape of both telecommunications and the internet, i think that the united states of america really needs to concentrate and we in congress and certainly the fcc really need to concentrate on true competition. competition is one of the hallmarks of our economy. and it seems to me that i bump into those that speak about
competition with a great deal of passion until they see competition coming from a thousand miles away and want to squash it like a bug. so we do need competition, far more consumer choice. and i think when those two are the pillars, that we just can't go with wrong. but we have a long way toss go to get there -- ways to go to get there. of there was a very interesting article in today's new york times about the duopoly we have in our country in terms of telecommunications companies and the history of that. i think all of that is instructive. at least it's instructive to me. so those are the two things that i keep my eye on. >> host: representative eshoo, does cell phone unlocking fall into that more competition arena? >> guest: i think it does. i think it does. i think what people buy and pay for they should be able to use however they choose to use it. and so i think that it's very
important to, that unlocking legislation -- which i'm an original co-sponsor of -- of course, it deals with something that's outside of the jurisdiction of my committee. but the person that's walking down the street doesn't care about committee jurisdictions. they would like to be able to unlock and use and move across all of their applications without the fear of a penalty or even jail time. so, now this was contained in the digital millennium copyright act, the dmca, which allowed the librarian of congress to weigh in on this, and there was an exemption, and now it's open. that's going to be taken up by the judiciary committee, and i think that this is the perfect time to address this. and i think that the bill that
i'm an original co-sponsor on, i should say of, really closes the loop on this by opening things up. now, i know the chairman, chairman goodlatte, whom i have a good deal of regard for, bob goodlatte, his bill only goes so far. in other words, it's a temporary fix. the bill that i'm a part of makes this permanent, and i think it's terrific for consumers and away we go. i say unlock them. >> host: so if you had a message for the at&ts and the verizons or for those two companies in general when it comes to net neutrality, when it comes to cell phone unlocking, what would your message be to at&t and verizon? >> guest: well, i don't -- you know, i enjoy working with everyone, most frankly. and while i may not agree with some of the larger carriers on some issues, i'll work with them
on others. i think that's my responsibility be to do that. but i do think that as the, as the incentive auctions, the voluntary auctions that are upon us now, i do think that the fcc has to steer this in a way that very small, medium size and large companies be able to compete relative to spectrum. and the idea that big fish swallow up little fish i don't think is healthy for our economy. now, they all have a business plan. obviously, they want to make money. but when you look at the markets in the country, 80% is owned in terms of the beachfront, the most valuable spectrum. and spectrum is gold in our country. we have to do much more in order
to loosen and free it up. 80% is owned by the top companies. so for someone to suggest that, or if anyone were to suggest that that's, that that's acceptable, i don't think so. i just don't. so we agree with each other sometimes, other times we don't agree, and it keeps life interesting. but i think that the facts are really rather compelling. >> do you have any concern that if the fcc adopted what you're saying which would be some sort of caps or limits on at&t and verizon in the these spectrum auctions, that that might limit the amount of revenue that the government would get, and that revenue has to -- >> guest: well, that's the hammer that they're using. that's the hammer that they're using. now, part of that hammer has some bang and some truth to it. and that is that we do need some of the resources that flow from the, you know, from the auction
in order to fund a very important public policy goal, and that is the nationwide interoperable public safety network which i was a great proponent of. that was the only recommendation of the 9/11 commission that the congress had not made good on, and we finally did. and thank goodness that we did. but it -- so we are reliant on bringing forward some resources. but i think if the only way we approach this is that this is a cash cow that the country will be losing out because it's more than producing revenue. i think that we have to look at it through the lens of multiplicity and what opportunities this affords us. this is probably one of the last large auctions that there will
be, and it's the first time in the history of our country that we're conducting an auction this way which says to me, big opportunity. large opportunity. so i think that, i think that it's important to, to keep what we were talking about in mind, that there be opportunity for small companies as well. my experience representing silicon valley is i'm so proud. you opened the program by saying i represent google and all of these wonderful companies employing tens, hundreds of thousands of people. but i remember when they were born. and so it's very important in this sector as well that new companies be able to not only creep and crawl, but be able to get up on their feet and walk and then run and grow. that's where opportunity and innovation constantly takes place, and that's why i think it's so important.
>> i want to ask you about another issue that's going to come up before your subcommittee in the next few months, and that's feel la, in the satellite television reauthorization bill. do you think that congress should pass a clean reauthorization, or is this an opportunity to take up video regulations and, if so, what should those be? >> guest: well, i prefer it clean so that, so that it gets done can. you don't want the effort to become a christmas tree with many things dangling off of it. but i do think that, you know, if there are some issues that can be proven to be legitimate, to be married with this bill, we should have hearings about that and have a good discussion. so i'm somewhat agnostic as to what those issues would be, but i prefer a clean bill because it does have to be reauthorized. it's something we need to get
done. >> host: i'm sorry, i didn't mean to interrupt you. >> guest: that's all right. >> host: before we get too far from spectrum, i did want to ask you we've had a bit of discussion in the last couple of weeks on this program whether or not the auctions are doable in 2014 with just three commissioners sitting on the fcc, etc. we've had a variety of opinions, what are your thoughts whether the auctions are possible? >> guest: well, i wouldn't say with earnly that they will take place in -- with certainly that they will take place in 2014, but we're on track. as far as the senate confirming a new commissioner as well as a new head of the commission, they usually combine those. but my understanding, and i think it's a correct one, is that the republicans haven't decided who their person is going to be. and so that's slowing us down a bit. but i think that we're on schedule, and i hope that that
decision will be taken up by the republicans. they will decide who they want to advance, couple the two so that their nominations can be reviewed and that they can be confirmed. and i think that'll be good for the country and good for the business of the country if we get that done. >> do you think that, so mignon cry burp is the acting chairwoman now until the senate takes up tom wheeler, do you think she should postpone any controversial decisions until a permanent chairman gets in there? >> guest: well, i don't ascribe to the school of driving with a brake on, with an emergency brake on. i'm thrilled that she's the acting chairwoman. she's broken a glass ceiling, a woman, an african-american. i mean, imagine, it's the 21st century, and this is the first time that this has happened. so, no, i don't think things should be put off. i think that we should continue to conduct as much business as
possible and keep getting things done. that's my thinking on it. >> host: wanted to ask you-- >> guest: and i think that she has the capability to do so as well. >> guest: a couple of weeks ago representative walden was on this program, and he mentioned, talked about the cybersecurity supply chain working group that he appointed you and mike rogers to. what is that? what's its importance? >> guest: i think it has enormous importance. and this is an issue that i raised with the chairman, chairman walden, as we were going to be exploring many issues. and it really dates back to my time as a member of the house intelligence committee. where i served for four terms and, you know, we have term limits there. but supply chain integrity was an issue that i dealt with there. i saw it very close up, and i think on the intelligence side i
understand this very well but also the technology side. and so we want to make sure under our jurisdiction at the committee exactly what supply chain integrity entails, what is a threat to our supply chain in our country that we identify that and that within the jurisdiction of the committee that we come up with policies that will deal with that. we know, i know that on theday, that fateful day that our nation was attacked that our telecommunications system and all that is attached to it and the integrity that it had was the jewel in the crown of our tool box. and so that should not be interrupted, that can't be interrupted, it can't be sold off, and i don't want to see any
foreign interest taking that over and getting a toe hold in our country. because it is all about national security. >> host: brendan sasso. >> so you're saying no foreign interests. do you mean specifically china, or are you concerned about -- >> guest: i think we need to examine all of it. i think we need to examine all of it. do i think that there are some, some specifics already that are out there that have been examined, that continue to be examined? yes, that's so. but this is -- and i think the chairman has done a wonderful job in establishing these working groups. because you can't have these kinds of -- hearings are not conversational. but they are very important. markups, obviously, are writing a bill. but i think this is one of several working groups that have been established, bipartisan, very important. and i think that mike rogers,
obviously, now chairman of the house intelligence committee and also a member of energy and commerce and myself having shared both of those backgrounds together and now he's the chairman, i think that we can get some very important work done. >> soft bank, a japanese company, is trying to buy sprint. they just got national security clearance for that. do you think that was the wrong decision? was that something that you're concerned -- >> guest: well, i wasn't part of that clearing, but i'm sure that that, or i would hope -- and there isn't any reason for me to second guess it -- that the vetting was very deep and broad. as it should be. because, again, the national security of our country is not just two words. there are many parts of it, and our telecommunications infrastructure and what it represents is an essential part of that. >> host: how would you describe yours and greg walden's working relationship? >> guest: i think it is very healthy. we genuinely like each other.
we have, i think, a real deep respect for each other. he has his job to do. but the way i view this is that so many of these issues, almost all of them are really nonpartisan. so i work for them to be bipartisan. it should be. and i think that our records together or our record together is a very good one. i mean, a very large bill on spectrum with -- establishing finally the nationwide interoperable public safety network is very, very exciting and important for people across the country. imagine when the first responders went into the twin towers, the new york fire d., the new york police department, they could not communicate with one another. and so, you know, we changed
that. now, we've had some arguments and debates about unlicensed spectrum which i think is just so important. we did get into it the bill. but in the aftermath we've had some disagreements. but it's in a very respectful manner, which it should be, which it should be. >> host: well, pardon me. another industry is meeting in washington next week, the cable industry is having its annual show. >> guest: uh-huh, yes. >> host: two questions. are you planning on attending -- >> guest: i am. >> host: -- the show? >> guest: i am. in fact, i'm going to fly back, i'm going to give up a day at home in my district to fly back to be there for it. i haven't been for a while, and i think both as ranking member and it's an important try in our country that i be there. and these shows are really very exciting, too, in terms of showing off the innovation that thai so proud -- they're so proud of. >> host: just to follow up on that, senator mccain has
reintroduced or is reintroducing his a la carte cable bill. what do you think of that? >> guest: well, i understand the, his calling for it. there was a previous member of our committee some years ago that raised it. i can't remember who it is. what i worry about when you really dissect how all this packaging works, a la carte everyone understands because they've been in restaurants, and they know what a la carte means. but what i'm genuinely concerned about are some of the really smaller niche stations that could be lost in this. and i think that they're important. they're important across minority communities in our country and such. so while i understand from a very popular viewpoint that you just deconstruct this and people can just, you know, buy one at a
time, i mean, i'm struck by how many cable, you know, how many stations i have access to. and i think sometimes, you know, how much am i using this? but there's a reason for that packaging, and my concern about it, my chief concern are these niche stations and how you accommodate that. but i also think that there's a frustration on the part of many people. i hear it from my constituents, and that is that they don't see competition between cable operators in the region. and while cable, the cable industry has made a huge investment, i mean, billions of dollars -- and i applaud that -- you know, people see their cable bills go up. so it'll be an interesting debate. now, his bill didn't really go anywhere last time. i don't think senator rockefeller, who's the chairman of the committee, has commented on it this time. and i don't think senator mccain is on the committee any
longer. so let's see what happens with it. >> host: we have one minute left. one minute. >> another tv issue is areo. this is this internet tv streaming service. do you think that's something that congress -- >> guest: i think it's exciting. i think it's very exciting. and i think that it has the possibility of really revolutionizing tv as we know it. >> and i guess one last question briefly. >> guest: got one in p. okay. >> chairman walden, the fcc process for format, should he expect a different outcome this time? it didn't get anywhere in the senate last time. do you think democrats there's any room for compromise? >> guest: i think there is room for compromise. but we really were not included very much in this in the last go around. and what i mean by that is that the suggestions we put on the table just kind of fell off the table. so, but you know what? it's a new chapter.
i welcome the chairman saying we want to work with you. these are some of the things that you brought up in the last congress, we're willing to sit down and talk about them. i think that's the way to go. so the door is never closed permanently. >> host: representative anna eshoo is a democrat of california, the ranking member on the house subcommittee on communications and technology. brendan sasso is with "the hill" newspaper. thank you both. >> thank you. >> guest: thank you. my pleasure. >> held a hearing with interior secretary sally jewell. the president's 2014 budget includes $11.7 billion for the interior department, a 4% increase over the 2012 level. this is just under two hours. >> good morning.
senator murkowski is on her way and also because we have votes at 10:00, we're going to try and move everything quickly this morning. i wallet to thank senator -- i want to thank senator murkowski and senator barrasso, we always do these in a bipartisan way. this morning we're going to review the programs and activities of the department of the interior. the hearing marks the first time that secretary jewell -- i like those words, secretary jewell -- has testified before the committee since her confirmation in april, so i'd like to welcome her back to the committee, and we look forward to her statement. i believe this hearing also marks the final time that assistant secretary david hayes will appear before the committee before he leaves office, and i'd like to extend my appreciation to him for his long career as deputy secretary over the past and especially his work as deputy secretary over the past four and a half years in his second tour of duty with the
department. i want to just take a minute to highlight a few provisions in the current budget proposal. overall, i'm pleased with the administration's proposed budget for the department of the interior which is $11.7 billion, nearly a 3% increase over the 2013 continuing resolution level. budgets are places where you've got to make tough decisions, and the administration in many particulars has done a thoughtful job of putting scarce dollars in the right places. the president has made the conservation of our public lands through our national parks policies encouraging outdoor recreation and support a high priority, and i strongly support the president's commitment. outdoor recreation, as we have talked about in this committee, is major, major business and a jobs producer for our country. studies have found that americans spend $646 billion each year on outdoor recreation. that equates to over six million dire